Contact: Dave Blower Jr. at 317-644-0980;
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Dec. 4, 2018) — Indiana’s corn and soybean growers remain optimistic following the news that U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to postpone further tariffs and to resume some trade – especially for ag goods. In fact, President Trump tweeted, “Farmers will be a very BIG and FAST beneficiary of our deal with China.”
Encouraged by the news that China will buy more U.S. agricultural products, the markets for Indiana soybeans and corn showed an immediate increase on Monday morning. Ongoing trade negotiations with China remain private, but farmers look forward to hearing specifics that enable long-term planning as soon as possible. China has been the No. 1 buyer of U.S. soybeans – annually importing approximately 30 percent of the total U.S. crop. China has also been the second-largest importer of total U.S. farm goods. The recent tariffs have dampened those markets, lowered prices and created uncertainty. This news offers the promise of welcome relief to farmers who have patiently awaited a resolution to U.S. trade differences with China.
This, however, was not the only farm-trade-related news that came out of the G20 meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina. President Trump, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau signed a trade agreement on Friday that is vital to U.S. farmers.
The Indiana Soybean Alliance (ISA) and the Indiana Corn Growers Association (ICGA) supports the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). This pact solidifies long-standing relationships with strong farm trade partners. Market watchers consider the USMCA an update to the 25-year-old North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
With more than $44.6 million of agricultural commodities crossing the border in 2017, Canada is Indiana’s top importer of Hoosier farm goods. The 2017 total was an $11 million increase on the $33.5 million in ag goods shipped north in 2016. “Canada is Indiana’s No. 1 ag trading partner, and we don’t take that relationship for granted,” said Jasper County, Ind. farmer and ISA board member Kendell Culp. “We are very happy that the new USMCA has been signed, and we can now focus on producing the farm goods that Canada wants.”
Mexico ranks as the Hoosier State’s third-best trading partner with nearly $12 million in farm goods sent south. The No. 1 buyer of U.S. corn, Mexico imports more than 8 million metric tons annually – twice as much as the No. 2 importer, Japan. Also, Mexico increased its purchase of U.S. soybeans by 91 percent in the past year: 1.8 million metric tons in 2017 to 3.4 million metric tons in 2018.
“By far, Mexico imports more Indiana corn than any other country in the world,” said Indiana Corn Growers Association Vice President Mike Beard, who farms in Clinton County, Ind. “The USMCA will allow us to continue to do what we do best, and that’s produce corn and other farm products that people around the world want.”
Congress must ratify the USMCA to close the loop on the legislative process. Hoosier farmers hope to see Congress expedite this process to ensure market stability as farmers prepare for the next growing season.
The Indiana Soybean Alliance works to enhance the viability of Indiana soybean farmers through the effective and efficient investment of soybean checkoff funds and the development of sound policies that protect and promote the interest of Indiana soybean farmers. The ISA is working to build new markets for soybeans through the promotion of grain marketing, livestock, aquaculture, production research, biofuels, environmental programs, and new uses for soybeans. ISA is led by an elected farmer board that directs investments of the soybean checkoff funds on behalf of more than 28,000 Indiana soybean farmers and promotes policies on behalf of the nearly 600 dues paying members. Learn more at
The Indiana Corn Growers Association, which works with the state and federal governments to develop and promote sound policies that benefit Indiana corn farmers, consists of 9 farmer-directors who provide leadership to the organization on behalf of the nearly 600 ICGA members statewide. Learn more at.
This communications was NOT funded with Indiana soybean or Indiana corn checkoff dollars